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updated: 3/3/2014 11:54 AM

Cold hampers annual Maple Syrup Fest in Illinois

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Associated Press

GENOA, Ill. -- One of the coldest winters on record in northern Illinois has taken its toll on an annual maple syrup festival.

The (DeKalb) Daily Chronicle reports the bitter cold kept the sap from flowing at the Maple Syrup Fest over the weekend. The festival is held at Russell Woods Forest Preserve in Genoa (juh-NOH'-uh). It's the first time in the festival's history that the sap didn't flow.

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Staff from the University of Illinois Extension usually demonstrate the method of tapping into a maple tree and explain the history of maple syrup. They lead a hike through the forest to find a tree to tap.

This year, drilling into a tree was disappointing. No sap water was released.

Elsewhere, maple syrup producers are seeing a later start for their syrup season.

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